THINK LIKE A FASCIST: Win A Prize For Thinking Up Daffy Trigger Warnings For Classic Books

Trigger warnings – alerts that somebody, somewhere might be traumatized by something – are all the rage on certain college campuses these days.

This spring, students and professors have demanded trigger warnings for course material at schools including Rutgers University, the University of California, Santa Barbara and, of course, Oberlin College.

The wacky leftists have suggested that trigger warnings must be slapped on classic literature such as “Mrs. Dalloway” by Virginia Woolf (because it deals with suicide) and “The Merchant of Venice” by William Shakespeare (because it contains anti-Semitism).

A student at Rutgers wants a trigger warning for “The Great Gatsby” because, he worries in The Daily Targum, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece contains “a variety of scenes that reference gory, abusive and misogynistic violence.”

In the spirit of a wonderful lampooning of trigger warnings in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the National Association of Scholars (NAS) is gamely holding a contest to collect the most sublimely ridiculous trigger warnings for the world’s classic literature.

This week only, you can submit yours via Twitter using the handle @NASorg and the hashtag #triggerwarningfail. You can also submit on the group’s Facebook page. The top three submitters will each receive “A Bee in the Mouth: Anger in America Now” by NAS president Peter Wood.

Below are a few examples of trigger warnings from NAS and some of the tweets that have already been submitted.

The Iliad book cover Creative Commons Secret Pilgrim

“The Iliad”: WARNING: Disturbing scene for those suffering sports injuries. #triggerwarningfail @NASorg

Oedipus Rex YouTube screenshot FULL audio books for everyone

“Oedipus Rex”: WARNING: Prejudicial treatment of alternative family structures. #triggerwarningfail @NASorg

Gulliver's Travels BlockbusterUK

“Gulliver’s Travels”: WARNING: Size-ist. #triggerwarningfail @NASorg

Here are some tweets which have already come in:






And, finally, here’s a tweet from some guy named Aaron Jorbin who is all torn up about the whole thing (WARNING: Hilariously smug sanctimony):


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